Get answers to your Prostate Cancer questions.
The prostate is a
gland in the male
reproductive system located just
below the bladder (the organ that
collects and empties urine) and in
front of the rectum (the lower part
of the intestine). It is about the
size of a walnut and surrounds part of the urethra (the tube that empties urine from the
bladder). The prostate gland produces fluid that makes up part of semen.
As men age, the prostate may get bigger. A bigger prostate may block the
flow of urine from the bladder and cause problems with sexual function. This condition is called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), and although
it is not cancer, surgery may be
needed to correct it. The symptoms
of benign prostatic hyperplasia or of other problems in the prostate may be
similar to symptoms of prostate cancer.
See the following PDQ summaries for more information about prostate cancer:
Prostate cancer is found mainly in older men. Although the number of men with prostate cancer is large, most men diagnosed with this disease do not die from it. Prostate cancer occurs more often in African-American men than in white men. African-American men with prostate cancer are more likely to die from the disease than white men with prostate cancer.
Anything that increases a person's chance of developing a disease is called a risk factor. Risk factors for prostate cancer include the following: